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Horror as dragon left paralysed after Harlow yobs launch sickening attack

Communities / Fri 9th Oct 2015 at 09:51am

BeardedTHE RSPCA is appealing for help to find four youngsters who kicked a bearded dragon around a park ‘like a football’.

A horrified woman called the RSPCA when she saw four boys kicking the reptile to each other at a park in Harlow, Essex.

The animal is thought to have been kicked up into the air about 25 times, up to head height, and was left paralysed after the attack.

RSPCA Emily Cheeseman said: “The witness saw the bearded dragon being kicked up into the air and crashing down onto the ground head first. It was like they were playing keepy uppy with it.

“This was a sickening, cowardly attack on a defenceless creature. It’s horrible to think that these youngsters appear to be getting pleasure out of deliberately hurting an animal.

“It’s really important that we find the youngsters who did this and would urge anyone with information to call us.”

The attack happened about 10pm on Sunday (Oct 4) Sumners Park, near Milwards, Harlow.

The woman who saw the attack stepped-in and rescued the injured lizard then called the RSPCA for help. The bearded dragon was paralysed and was rushed straight to a vet where he was given pain relief.

She said: “I was walking my dog and I saw them kicking something and I heard them laughing. I thought it was a football or bean bag at first then I saw the tail. I walked a bit nearer and was sickened when I saw it was an animal.

“They were kicking it to head height and must have kicked it at least 25 times. I was horrified.”

The brave dog walker ran over to the youngsters and told them to stop before taking the bearded dragon home where she called the police and RSPCA.

She added: “I wrapped him up, he wasn’t able to move his legs or his tail. It was about half an hour before he opened his eyes.”

An x-ray has revealed that the bearded dragon, who has been named Bruce by staff, had no broken bones although it is possible it may have suffered damage to its spine as he was unable to move his legs or tail immediately after the attack.

Inspector Cheeseman said: “Bruce is being given the best possible care at the vets. He has made a slight improvement since he was admitted but he still hasn’t moved one of his legs so we are waiting to see if he will recover or if he’s suffered permanent injury.

“The woman who stepped in to help was incredibly brave and I’d like to publically thank her for saving this bearded dragon.

“We would really like to know who he belongs to and also speak to the youngsters who attacked him as a matter of urgency.”

The boys are described as being in their early teens, white and wearing tracksuits and hooded tops.

If anyone has any information about who owns the bearded dragon or who the youngsters are should call the RSPCA on 0300123 8018 and leave a message for Inspector Cheeseman.

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